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Input Pathways of persistent organic pollutants to AntarCTica (ImPACT)

The SCAR  Input Pathways of Persistent Organic Pollutants to Antarctica (ImPACT) Action Group has published a horizon scan of priority actions and challenges in Persistent Organic Pollutant monitoring.

Management of chemical pollution is a critical global issue. The paper, published this month in The Lancet Planetary Health, identifies four priority research and research facilitation gaps, and provides recommendations for Antarctic Treaty Parties on taking strategic action:

  • Priority 1: Antarctica as a natural laboratory for the identification of persistent and mobile chemicals
  • Priority 2: Chemical behaviour, fate, and effects in changing Antarctic ecosystems
  • Priority 3: Toxicological sensitivity of endemic Antarctic biota
  • Priority 4: Sustained circumpolar surveillance

The ImPACT group aims to facilitate coordinated investgiation and monitoring of chemical input to the Antarctic region. ImPACT is a policy-impact driven Action Group which aims to serve both the Global Monitoring Plan of the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), as well as the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty (the Madrid Protocol) 

Reference: Bengtson Nash, S., et al. (2023) 'Monitoring persistent organic chemicals in Antarctica in support of global chemical policy: a horizon scan of priority actions and challenges' The Lancet Planetary Health 7(5), pp.e435-e440. 

Image:  Southern hemisphere humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) fibroblast cells cultured for in-vitro toxicity assessment. Credit: Bengtson Nash et al. 2023